5 of the quirkiest sights in Porto
1) Lavadouro Público da Afurada
In the heart of the charming fishing village of Afurada in Gaia, there’s a public laundry with old-fashioned water tanks, where locals go to wash their daily load by hand. The clothes drying outside on an improvised web of ropes could just as well be part of a superb modern art exhibition.
2) Forte de São João Baptista da Foz
This sea-facing 16th-century fort is overlooked by most tourists. It’s a curious place to explore and the views are fabulous, but there’s a surprising sight waiting to be discovered. Lawn Tennis Club da Foz is housed within the castle and you’ll be able to see gravel courts through some of the fort’s stone-framed windows.
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3) Forte de São Francisco Xavier
This fort has been nicknamed ‘Castelo do Queijo’ (Castle of the Cheese), and few locals know its real name. Legend has it that the shape of the rock upon which it stands on the beach, resembled that of cheese. Inside, there’s a tiny museum showcasing historical weapons. Entry costs just 50 cents.
4) Desenhos Eróticos by Siza
It’s so easy to blink and miss these small erotic drawings in São Bento Metro Station. Pay attention to the azulejo tiles on some of the rounded pillars and you will see them. The drawings are by Porto architect Álvaro Siza.
5) A Menina Nua
This eye-catching sculpture by Henrique Moreira is mostly known as A Menina Nua (The Naked Girl) but its actual name is Juventude (Youth). It depicts a naked girl sitting peacefully with an enigmatic smile on her face, and it has been standing in a fountain in Avenida dos Aliados since 1929.
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